INtroduction of SECurity and Trust in the Earth Observation Data Chain


LuxSpace together with its partners HITEC and LUXTRUST were entrusted by ESA to study the "Introduction of Security and Trust in the EO data exploitation chain".

The short-term study analysed and defined the requirements for signing and time-stamping Earth Observation data products, showed how they can be introduced into the data flow(s) and infrastructure(s) and processing, and demonstrated with a prototype software tool on a concrete example how signatures and timestamping can be integrated into the existing EO ground segment.

The INSECT study demonstrated that using legally recognized digital signatures and timestamping are useful for EO data & service providers as well as for the European Space Agency.  The Demonstrator showed that the concept can be realised with existing (and future) security solutions provided by LuxTrust.  The performance of the demonstration tool was good and the user friendliness of the automatic signing solution was positively appreciated, both by the ESA and by the EO data & service provider involved.  As the overall costs for implementing this service are relatively low the barrier is not very high.

Next steps are:


  • Implement the concept of digital signatures and timestamps into the ESA GMES coordinated data access system.

  • Further analyse the legal framework and propose actions to make the usage of digital signatures a pre-requisite for EO data handling at a large scale (even in space).

  • Start studies or further analysis how to implement an Audit trail using digital signature and timestamping.


The executive summary of the study can be downloaded here.


For further information please contact Luxspace.